General Joseph B. Colton, the original G.I. Joe, is a highly-decorated officer in the Army. He has had vast experiences in leading teams in covert missions. Tales of his bravery and exploits have reached the highest office in the land. He was tasked by no less than President John F. Kennedy to command a special team. A special team that would be composed of the best of the best the military has to offer working for the common good. Even the best soldiers would come to a point where they would retire.
He served for a long time and decided to take time off himself. But adventure will always find G.I. Joe and there will always be evil to be fought. As a man of action, he didn't hesitate to go sign back on to duty. Wherever there is trouble, G.I. Joe will be there to save the day.
|“||There are other men in the military---ones with higher rank and more experience and shinier medals---who could have been selected to lead this new force. Some of them may even be better soldiers than Lt. Colton. But what this country needs now, even more than good soldiers, are great heroes.||”|
—35th U.S. President John F. Kennedy
Adventure Team adverts
G.I. Joe handled the new applicants to the Adventure Team, testing Mike Power and welcoming him to the team. He subsequently gained Eagle Eyes which allowed him to see over long distances, enabling him to spot the arrival of The Intruder. Subsequently Joe and Mike encountered and recruited Bulletman to the team.
A Real American Hero continuity
Marvel Comics continuity
Devil's Due Comics continuity
G.I. Joe vs. Transformers
In 1978 Colton was part of the three-man Adventure Team with Atomic Man and Chok-Pa on a mission in the Himalayas when they were attacked by the forces of Cobra-La. Atomic Man was slain by the Decepticon Bludgeon, now working for Cobra-La, but Pythona ordered the other two kept alive as she wanted a pet.
Over the next twenty-five years Colton was kept prisoner in a cell in Cobra-La, often taunted by Pythona about Cobra-La's plans to use Unicron to remove the human race from the planet but showing little reaction save when Chok-Pa died. Secretly he learnt how to free himself from his bonds and search the city. When Pythona told him there were intruders from a team named "G.I. Joe" in his honour, including Hawk, Colton determined to save his former comrade and escaped his cell, joining Hawk, Flint and Optimus Prime in battle with Bludgeon and the Royal Guard. Despite his long confinement and Flint doubting him Colton's skills were unhindered and he subdued three of the Royal Guard single-handed and then many Yeti using his Kung Fu Grip.
He also demonstrated that he had learned how to speak Yeti. devised a plan to destroy the approaching Unicron by using a metal-eating spore that had been cultivated by Golobulus. In an attack on the Cobra-La throne room Colton was subdued by Nemesis Enforcer but he successfully appealed to Pythona's sense of compassion and she slew the monster. With Cobra-La defeated and captured, Colton wondered what he would do now and how he would fit into a word he hadn't been part of for twenty-five years. He became the commander of a team of Joes charged with taking control of Unicron's dead body to establish order and assistance amongst the many beings enslaved aboard it. He looked forward to "one heck of an adventure."